Design reaches new heights with AOD in Kandy

AOD, which offers Design Degrees from Northumbria University, UK will be opening the doors to their dedicated design education centre in Kandy, offering a pathway programme to globally-recognized design degree qualifications.

Why does Sri Lanka need Design?

We live during an age when creative thinking is as important as literacy or digital savviness to make it in the business world. This has made it incredibly important to make design education accessible to young people all over Sri Lanka. Design—the professional practice where creativity and commercial relevance converge, has been steadily climbing the job rankings, becoming one of the most in-demand professional paths out there today.

AOD—Sri Lanka’s most influential creative authority and pioneering private design educator has announced the opening of its campus in Kandy within this context where creative literacy and design professionalism have never been more important to the nation. AOD Kandy is the first place to offer AOD’s highly-respected creative education model outside Colombo. AOD in Kandy will offer Foundation Design Studies through a multicultural faculty of local and international designers and creative professionals. AOD Kandy will open its doors to creative young minds in the hill country this October, with open registrations for Design Foundation Studies and a short-term Fundamentals in Digital Photography programme.


How has AOD enabled design education and innovation over the years?

AOD emerged 17 years ago as an educator of young minds through Design education, building a creative force in Sri Lanka which has taken the creative industry in the country to great heights. It has evolved into a powerhouse which champions the South Asian voice of contemporary fashion and design within global creative circles, taking regional talent to international platforms like London Fashion Week International Fashion Showcase, Graduate Fashion Week UK, ISTD award, Cannes Lions, Spikes Asia etc. Simultaneously, AOD has been creating platforms within South Asia, for local and international influencers in fashion and design to gather, network, discuss and ideate the future of regional creativity and related businesses: South Asian Apparel Leadership Forum, Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka Design Festival, the Sustainable Fashion Symposium and Design Katha conference series are a few examples.


Why is AOD taking Design to Kandy?

Kandy was always in AOD’s agenda, as the institute was keen to help aspiring designers beyond Colombo to reach their dreams. AOD is home to amazing talent that come from all over the island and some of the best creative minds have come from the hills. Among them are Interior Designer Marianne Gooneratne, from Hillwood College who is the director and principal designer behind Lady Neon studio through which she had put forward some stunning work at popular Colombo lifestyle hotspots like Dharshan Munidasa’s A&W Fashion Café; the Visual Communication Designer Thilini Perera, from Girls’ High School; who specializes in branding, creative strategy and art direction, Fashion Designer Dinushi Pamunuwa, from Mahamaya Girls’ College, who is driving the successful designer Batik brand Wax Raqqs and Yomal Amunugama, from Trinity College, who is a Concept Artist and Animation Designer for the automotive industry. These designers who have made inspiring breakthroughs in their professional lives and their success stories will definitely spark confidence in young creatives from Kandy.


What is AOD’s Design Foundation programme about?

The Design Foundation programme will give students after O/L’s the necessary preliminary education needed for further design studies. With a range of modules covering photography, illustration, animation, art, graphic design, design thinking, product design and more, it will give curious young minds the proper backing needed for a successful career in almost any industry. After the completion of the Foundation programme students will be able to gain direct entry to the Design Degrees offered by Northumbria University, UK at AOD’s main Colombo campus.

How can students find out more?

Through ‘Creative Kandy -Design Open House’, AOD aims to give students in Kandy a chance to explore the opportunities in Design careers such as Fashion, Fashion Marketing, Interior Design, Visual Communication Design (Graphic Design) and Motion Graphics & Animation Design. ‘Creative Kandy’ will run as a series of talks and workshops conducted on 13th & 14th October from 10am – 4pm at AOD, 506, Peradeniya Road, Kandy. Participants can expect to get a hands-on preview to design studies through the workshops in fashion fabric draping, photography, brand identity designing, animation designing and more. Career guidance will be provided for those who want to explore how design can open up infinite possibilities for those with a bright mind and an inclination towards the extraordinary.  


Who will conduct the Design Foundation programme?

The Design Foundation programme will be led by Daniel Valentin. Daniel is an American fine art photographer, from the William Paterson University in New Jersey. Daniel will lead the academic studies and help students find international parallels to preliminary studies in graphic design, art, illustration, photography, fashion, interior design and new media used for creative expression.

In addition to the Design Foundation Programme, AOD Kandy will also conduct a Photography programme led by its lead lecturer Daniel Valentin. This AOD Design Foundation Programme is an eight-month course that prepares and qualifies after O/L students to take up higher education in design whether in Sri Lanka at AOD Colombo or with partner universities in the UK. AOD Kandy will open its registrations with a must-attend open house. ‘Creative Kandy Open House’ by AOD will take place during the October 13-14 weekend with career guidance, college tours and one-on-one explorations of design education with the lead lecturer Daniel Valentin.